Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tortilla dream

I sent a few friends a wonderful bit of food writing from LA Weekly writer Jonathan Gold's piece "What's a Burrito: A Primer" (here, if you want to read it:

It prompted co-worker Rochelle Reynoldson to send her own message back. It was such a lovely piece of food writing that I had to share. Reynoldson was a Specialist (E-4) in the U.S. Army, serving with a Huey unit based out of Ft. Campbell, KY., during the Persian Gulf War. Sadly, she's leaving the Observer soon to go back to school, so consider this my tribute to her:

"They weren't burritos, but. . . one of fondest memories I have during the ground war (Desert Storm) is of my Navajo buddy making tortillas for us all from scratch.

"We had stumbled upon a little mud 'ville one day on a supply run and were able to procure certain foodstuffs from their little market (flour, butter, eggs, potatoes, onions). Those ingredients were like gold to us. Being out in the middle of the desert, we had not seen real food in God knows how long.

"That evening, as we huddled around the Coleman heater, passing around a two-day-old newspaper and listening to Bob Marley, James whipped up the mixture and fried tortillas w/butter for us all. It was amazing, she cooked them on half of a tin mess kit on top of the Coleman. I have never tasted anything so divine.

" 'No Woman No Cry' will always remind me of that. The simplest joys."